£25k funding call launched at Phenom UK annual meeting

On February 11th Commercial Director Linsey Cresswell and Business Development Manager Chris Delf attended the annual meeting of Phenom UK at the National Physics Laboratory in Teddington, Middlesex.

Phenom UK  is a network of mainly academic institutions with an aim to share information on plant phenotyping issues and developments.

It is funded by BBSRC as a TTL (Technology Touching Life) body and this provides it with the capacity to sponsor early career academic research as well as conferences and workshops.

The morning session include presentations on the Netherlands Plant Eco-Phenotyping Centre which is based around Wageningen and Utrecht Universities. The NL government has invested €11 million (£9.25m) in the centre’s infrastructure with a similar sum committed for running costs.

There was also a session from NIAB, describing some of the challenges of collecting data using drones during the Designing Future Wheat project, which is a collaboration with several partners including Rothamsted Research, University of Nottingham and John Innes Centre.

The lunch break proved to be a great opportunity for networking with fellow delegates: there was lots of interest in the work of CHAP and its capabilities (following the mention by Dr Bruce Grieve, of University of Manchester and Fotenix, pictured), with several potential visits to be organised as a follow up activity.

During the afternoon, there was a discussion about the value of field plot trials versus controlled environment situations and the challenges for data quality and quantity.

Phenom UK opened its call for bids for up to £25k to look at potential new technologies for phenotyping tasks, undertake initial investigations using new combinations of technology or the development of new data sets to support machine learning (A.I). The deadline for applications is 5PM on March 27th.  The competition is open to all, not just Phenom UK members.

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